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Bangladesh opposition demands CEC's resignation

Press Trust of India  |  Dhaka 

Bangladesh's main opposition alliance has demanded the resignation of the election commissioner, questioning his neutrality, days ahead of the December 30 general elections, a has said.

Members of Bangladesh's opposition BNP-NUF alliance on Tuesday walked out of an meeting, alleging that the behaviour of (CEC) Nurul Huda was "inappropriate" and he was not taking their views into consideration during the talks.

The opposition delegation led by Front (NUF) convenor and eminent jurist met Huda to discuss the alleged arrests of the coalition's supporters in police crackdown ahead of the this week.

The NUF has demanded Huda's resignation accusing him of bias ahead of the polls, a said last evening.

general said they demanded the CEC's resignation as they fear a free and fair election cannot be expected under Huda's leadership.

"It is impossible to get neutral behaviour let alone expecting a free, fair and neutral election under him," he told reporters.

Alamgir said they have urged Bangladesh's figurehead to appoint a neutral person as the commission's

The senior BNP said his party wanted to contest the polls and expected the commission's attitude to change.

He said Huda paid no heed to the alliance leaders as they noted instances of attacks since the start of campaigning on December 10.

At least six people have been killed and several hundred injured in election-related violence since December 10. Both opposition and the Auling blame each other for the attacks.

The suggest that most attacks were carried out by the ruling party activists who were often backed by the police.

Mahbub Talukdar, a member of the four-men commission, has asked the police and other members of the law enforcement agencies not to "humiliate your uniform" while discharging their duties.

The alliance decided to meet the CEC as it was debarred from holding its wrapping up election rally in the capital.

The NUF leaders accused the police of playing a "biased role" to hinder opposition candidates' poll campaign on the ground.

The opposition allege that police have arrested some 10,500 of their activists in a crackdown ahead of elections with an intention to create a "climate of fear".

The police, however, said no one has been arrested without specific charge and warrant.

called the charges "fictitious", noting that they were framed to favour the ruling party, which leads a grand alliance and aims to win a third consecutive term.

The BNP is in disarray as its and ex-is serving a five-year prison term in two graft charges while her son and is staying in apparently to evade a life term imprisonment.

A earlier this year sentenced Rahman to life imprisonment for masterminding a 2004 grenade attack that killed 24 leaders and activists, while then opposition leader narrowly escaped the assault.

and Zia have been political foes since the introduction of democracy in 1991.

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Wed, December 26 2018. 16:00 IST